General elections: UP candidates remain on top in losing security deposits

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By Tajdar H. Zaidi

Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh being a large state  it also elects an army of candidates in comparison to other parts of the country. Interestingly, leaders from UP always maintained the record of topping the list of losing security deposits also after failing to get certain number of votes.

In the last Lok Sabha elections (2019), 819 candidates from UP lost their security deposits.

However, in 2019 general elections, 774 candidates in Tamil Nadu and 768 candidates in Maharashtra also lost their security deposits respectivly. An interesting data reveals that Union Government had forfeited 17.5 crore from the candidates across the the country, who lost their securty deposits in 2019 general elections.

Forfeiture of Security Deposit in Elections:If a candidate fails to get 1/6 of the total valid votes franchised in that constituency then the amount deposited by the candidate is seized by the Election Commission of India. As per Section 34, 1 (a) of the Representation of the People Act,1951; it is mandatory for general candidates to deposit security of Rs 25,000 in the case of Parliamentary constituency and Rs 10,000 to fight the election in Assembly Constituency.

Since the first Lok Sabha polls, 71,246 out of 91,160 candidates who contested have forfeited their security deposit, representing a cumulative figure of 78 percent.

The increase in deposit amounts over the years has paralleled this trend, with the Rs 500 security deposit for general candidates and Rs 250 for candidates from SC/ST communities in 1951 increasing to Rs 25,000 and Rs 12,500 respectively for general and SC/ST candidates now.

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